Sactown Urban Update

Sactown Urban Update

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Can you name the 6 Downtown Districts?

Did you know there are 6 distinct, Downtown neighborhoods, AKA Districts?  Each with a distinctive flavor born of history...  How many can you name?  [Part 1 of 3 parts]

Let's start with the Capitol Mall District:

It's among Sacramento's most prestigious business address, with inspiring views of the Sacramento River, State Capital and even the Buttes and snow capped Sierra's to the north and west on our frequent clear and sunny days.

Bounded by 7th and 2nd Streets between L and  and N Streets, the Capitol Mall District offers a majestic entrance to the capital from the west.  And, it's "home" to over 71,000 daytime employees!

Next up, The Civic Center District:

The Civic Center District is a nexus for City, County, State and Federal (and some would even say International) governmental activity.  It's distinguished by historic architectural landmarks such as the Rudolph A. Herold's City Hall, Masonic Temple and the Capital National Bank building within its 19 block boundary of H, J and I Streets between Interstate 5 and 13th Street.

The Civic Center is also about "Going Places": Its a key connection hub as a major entry point into Downtown with access to major freeways. and as a gateway to the Rail Yards and Amtrak's Sac Valley Station - the 7th busiest railway station in the entire Amtrak system!  And did you know that Cesar Chavez Park is one of the oldest parks in California?

Info and Image Sources: Downtown Sacramento Partnership

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Did you know? Rail Yard's Hospital location a return to medical roots...

Been there, done that?  Kaiser's recent announcement about a new hospital to be built at the Rail Yards brings the history of Downtown medical facilities full circle.

Medical care near the Rail Yard began officially on February 1, 1870, with the opening of the Central Pacific Hospital at 13th and D streets.  The hospital was built for the exclusive use of the railroad workers who became sick or injured while building the first transcontinental rail line from Sacramento over the Sierras to Promontory, Territory of Utah.

For more info about the important beginnings of this first hospital and Sacramento's progressive medical arts culture of the time see the book by J. Roy Jones, MD

Kaiser's hospital roots began when Henry J. Kaiser, the industrialist, teamed up with the man who essentially invented the prepaid medical practice model, Dr Garfield, to provide medical care for the thousands of workers and their families, first at the Grand Coulee Dam in Washington State and later during WWII at the massive shipyards down the road at Richmond California - for the princely sum of 5 cents a day!

For a look at the fascinating beginnings of prepaid medical care and the early history of the Kaiser Pemanente  of today please click here.

So, with Kaiser's plans to build a full service hospital on the Rail Yard site, heath care Downtown has come full circle!

Sources: History: The Old Central Pacific Hospital by J.Roy Jones, MD, Kaiser Permanente presentation to DSP. Images: CPRR Museum, SacBee

* John Woodall Blogs at “SactownUrbanUpdate”

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Is 3rd time the charm for DT gateway location?

I'll bet you know this face (place)?
419 J Street, Sacramento

This just in... the latest business to tie up at the revolving port 'o call known as 419 J Street has experienced restaurateurs at the helm according to the Sacramento Business Journal.

Hopefully their past successes can be offloaded DT and this mooring will be more permanent at this iconic building.

[image by Noel Neuburger, SBJ]

Sunday, July 10, 2016

This is one time when you want the blues...

When you see them in their BLUE jackets and shirts, you are seeing the DSP's Navigator program in action - these selfless workers reach out to homeless folks to connect them to services.

And Navigators are making a real difference in people's lives; to learn more about the program click here.

DSP has partnered with Sacramento Steps Forward , an assessment and outcome based organization dedicated to ending homelessness.  To learn more about what they do go here.

And if you need Navigator service within the Downtown District call 916 422 2200.

[Sources and images courtesy of DSP, SacBee, Lisa]

The City gets serious about trees

Tree Ordinance Update
It may soon be against the law to have a diseased tree on your property, even if you don't own it!

To protect and enhance our urban canopy, the city Council will soon review an updated Tree Ordinance which spells out rules for dealing with trees and makes it unlawful for an owner to allow certain conditions to exist - diseased trees among others.  Even if the tree belongs to the city!

It includes conditions such as dutch elm disease or other pests or disease on private property that constitutes a threat to health, safety or welfare of the residents, neighbors, public or other trees. Mistletoe, a parasite that slowly kills trees may also qualify.

City Code Chapter 12.56 "Tree Planting, Maintenance and Conservation" has been completely rewritten and aims to provide clear standards for protection, removal and replacement of city trees and private protected trees.   As written, certain trees on private property appear to be exempt but the proposed language is confusing.

Tree Permits will be required for all "Regulated Work" and will detail the location, nature and necessity of proposed tree work along with an application fee.  The city may require an arborist report, site map, landscape and/or tree replacement plan in addition to other information the city deems necessary.

"Regulated work"  means among other things, any act that could adversely impact the health of a tree such as:pruning branches or roots, putting lights on it, removing it, topping, working around it, and storing or using equipment or harmful substance within the tree's protection zone.  It does not include routine maintenance (also defined).

Specific guidelines for issuance of permits are contained in the proposed ordinance along with public notice and appeals provisions

The ordinance also says that property owners are responsible for the cost and maintenance of trees on their property if adjacent to a street or ally, and they are responsible for keeping those trees trimmed as (defined). and for removal of fallen leaves

The City Council takes up this matter on July 19th.  To review the new rules go to the city's Strategic Plan and Ordinance Review and read the Proposed Tree Ordinance under Project Resources.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

DT Parking for events at Golden 1 Center: planning ahead vs panic

With about 125 days until doors open to the public, people are beginning to think about where they are going to park when they go to the Golden 1 Center.  And many are worried.

On the surface not much seems to going on, but underneath, many have been
working hard to prepare for opening day (like ducks, calm on top, paddling like heck underneath).

A phased approach...  1st, Smart Meters; now Spot Zones:

Parking areas getting wised up. Known as Spot Zones they are being phased in around DT initially in 4 zones with Zone 1 being closest to the DT core and Zone 4 being the farthest away.  Parking meter rates, and the amount of additional time you can buy, will vary by zone and can will be adjusted by parking enforcement based upon demand - expect to pay more during DT events.  The idea is to allow you to add time to your meter from your mobile phone up to a maximum depending on which zone you're in.  It's going to be convenient but not cheap.

 I used the Parkmobile app at Crocker Park recently - it's easy and very cool

Sacramento City's urban parking strategy is designed for those who PLAN AHEAD.  Smart meters and Spot Zomes will give you lots of flexibility to vary the amount of time you are parked.  But that convenience has a price.  The rate structure is designed to encourage people visiting DT to use garages for longer stays such as for events at Golden 1 Center.

Next up... City garage technology update...  Don't think about driving to the arena to find parking, think: drive to a parking spot you've paid for before leaving home, then walk to the arena...

Thursday, May 26, 2016

What's that MOB in Downtown?

Why it's Kaiser's new Medical Office Building (MOB) at 5th and J!

Click here for more info and details...